Room Service where Despina Katsikakis stays ...

For business I spend a lot of time travelling for business, and one of the downsides is that you always feel completely disconnected from the city you're in. People are impressed that I travel to glamorous places, yet I never get to see them. But one hotel that stands out is the Park Hyatt in Sydney for the magic of its location. As soon as you open the curtains - with the electronic remote controls - you have a spectacular view of the harbour and opera house. It makes you feel intensely connected with the city. When I'm travelling for business, I tend to get two hours of consciousness in the hotel room a day - at 6am and at 10pm. To have the most glorious views in the world every time you step out onto the balcony is wonderful. The first time I stayed there, I saw a cockatoo perched on the balcony. Thinking it had escaped, I told the concierge, expecting him to catch it. It was then that I realised that cockatoos are as common in Sydney as pigeons are in London. I was the laughing stock of the office.

Last Updated: 31 Aug 2010

For pleasure The most unique place to stay is the Katikies hotel on the Greek island of Santorini. It's probably the most beautiful location of any hotel I've been to. It overlooks the volcano, and has an infinity pool that actually makes you feel like a bird because you are so high up. It goes up into the volcanic abyss. I first stayed there many years ago, before mobiles became popular. When you checked in, they handed you a hotel mobile phone, which could be used anywhere on the island. You just dialled 0 and the voice on the other end would say: 'Hello, Ms Katsikakis, what can I do for you?' You could be at the beach and request a car to pick you up. Or you could be on a street corner looking for a place to eat, and they'd recommend a restaurant and directions to get there. It was a free, 24-hour personal concierge, anywhere on the island. It meant that you never had to think, which is the ultimate thing to have on holiday. The other amazing thing is the staff. They all speak three languages fluently and look as though they have just stepped out of an Armani catalogue.

Despina Katsikakis is chairman of architects and designers DEGW.

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